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How To Choose The Right Stone Countertop

Choosing granite and quartz countertops in Los Angeles is becoming more and more commonplace. There’s no denying the visual appeal of a gleaming stone counter and these natural beauties can not only enhance the look of a kitchen or bathroom but also raise the resale value of a home. Whether you are building a new home or remodeling an existing kitchen adding stone countertops can be a great way to make a statement.

Counters are the center of the action in any kitchen. This is the place where you prepare meals, sit down to eat, or do household paperwork. It’s important that your counters stand up to the rigors of your family’s daily life while at the same time maintaining their good looks. That means finding a surface that can be easily cleaned and won’t be prone to scratches and dents. That’s one of the main qualities that have lent to the popularity of granite countertops in Los Angeles.

Of course, it’s not all about utility; looks are an important part of choosing a countertop too. Stone countertops are as varied and beautiful as the stones themselves. Each slab is completely individual, with its own color, veining and speckles, which means with your selection you can really give your kitchen a very personalized look. This is one of the qualities that make stone such a highly desirable material.

Types of Stone

While it’s certainly easy to find a lot of quartz countertops in Los Angeles, quartz is really only one of many types of stone available for use in the home. Here’s a brief look at the most popular types that you can choose from: 

1.   Quartzite – not to be confused with quartz, quartzite is metamorphic rock that is very hard, which makes it quite resistant to scratches. At the same time, it is also porous so it will absorb stains. This means you’ll have to invest a little more in your counters as you’ll need to seal them at least twice a year in order to prevent stains from becoming permanent.

2.   Marble – another metamorphic rock, marble is most often associated with the most high end luxury homes because of its beautiful visual appeal. Unfortunately, it is also extremely absorbent, even reacting to the oil on your skin. Regular sealing will be necessary and even with that step, marble will still develop a patina over the years. All of this means that it does not stand up well to regular wear.

3.   Granite – it is also common to find granite countertops in Los Angeles, as it has become one of the most popular choices for stone counters. It does require resealing but it also tends to be more durable and will hold up to regular use better than many other types of stone.

4.   Onyx – this is a rare stone that has a distinct, exotic beauty with its natural “banding” or strips of color. It is one of the softer types of stone so it requires reinforcing material in order to make it usable as a countertop surface. Not surprisingly, its rarity and need for extra care also make it one of the more expensive stones.

5.   Soapstone – with the increased trend toward more natural and rustic farmhouse design, soapstone has gained in popularity in recent years. It is much less porous than most other stones, which means it is less likely to stain and it doesn’t need to be sealed. However it is also very soft, so it is more susceptible to scratches and dents.  There is also a much more limited selection of colors, with soapstone only available in whites and blacks.

6.   Quartz – it’s not surprising when you think about the popularity of quartz countertops in Los Angeles. Quartz is an engineered stone, containing 90 percent stone mixed with a resin. The result is a product that is both non-porous and ten times harder than granite. Because it is non-porous, it doesn’t need to be sealed and is easy to clean with just warm soapy water. It is also available in a wide variety of colors.

Important Factors To Consider

Now you have an idea of the options available, although this is really only the tip of the iceberg, as each type of stone can have many variations in color, shading and patterns that can have a huge effect on the overall aesthetics of your kitchen. Choosing your countertop can come down to finding the perfect slab that catches your eye and fits in with your interior design.

Whether you’re looking for granite countertops in Los Angeles or opt for quartz or some other form of stone, there are certain important factors that you need to take into consideration in order to make the right choice for your home. 

The first place to start is with the size of your kitchen. Since stone can be much more expensive than other common countertop materials, the amount of area you need to cover will make a big difference in terms of your budget.

For smaller kitchens, you may be able to invest in higher end choices like marble, but if you have a large kitchen you might want to lean toward quartz or granite. Also, a larger size kitchen will likely require more than one slab, so you’ll want to choose a stone with a more standard pattern that is easily matched for a uniform look. This is one of the main reasons for the popularity of quartz countertops in Los Angeles, as quartz tends to have less variation, making it easier to match slabs.

As mentioned earlier, the amount of use your kitchen will get factors heavily into the type of stone you choose. If you have a large, busy family it’s likely your kitchen will get a lot of regular use and that means your counters will receive a lot of abuse, from stains and spills to scratches and chips. In this case you’ll want to choose a more durable stone like granite or quartz, both of which are much less likely to show signs of wear.

Kitchens that are used more for entertaining guests rather than gathering a large family tend to be more about looks than durability and this is where the more luxurious stones like marble or soapstone might be a better choice. These stones require more care as they will show damage easier, so they don’t stand up well to regular use.

Don’t Forget Style

While the practical factors are certainly important, when it comes to choosing granite countertops in Los Angeles or any other type of stone for that matter, personal design aesthetic also comes into play. Because there are so many types and variations of stone to choose from, it can be easy to find one that fits the style of your kitchen. 

For a more sleek and formal kitchen, you might opt for marble or a shiny granite; for a more rustic feel you’ll want something with a honed or matte finish like soapstone. You’ll also want to pick something that complements the finish of your cabinets. For darker cabinets, you’ll want lighter, brighter countertops, while lighter wood cabinets may look better with richer, warmer shades of stone. By contrasting the color of the countertop and cabinets you can make the stone stand out more, while opting for a more monochromatic pairing of counter and cabinet will look more sleek and modern but will also make your counters fade into the background.

Some people can be put off by the natural veining in some types of stone, but you can actually make it work to your advantage. Not only do those natural patterns give your counters wonderful visual appeal, but they can also help to hide stains and marks better than more uniform stone, so it’s worth considering for high traffic areas.

There’s no denying that when considering quartz countertops in Los Angeles or opting for another type of stone, price can also be a primary factor. While stone can be more expensive than other countertop materials, it doesn’t have to break your bank if you shop wisely. And if you can’t afford to go with stone for all of your counters, a more affordable approach may be to just go with stone for your island or even opt for an inset of another material like butcher block for specific tasks, which can also help to lower your expenses.

Let The Experts Help

If you’re considering stone countertops for your kitchen, it can help to have experts you can count on and there is no better choice for quartz and granite countertops in Los Angeles than B&F Cabinet, Stone & Floor. To help put the crowning touch on your kitchen design we offer 11 types of granite and 16 types of quartz to choose from, all with competitive pricing. 

In order to make your choice easier, we also offer free on site measurement and customized 3D design, prompt delivery and professional installation by licensed workers to see you through every step of the process. We know that stone countertops can be a real investment and that choosing just the right type and the right slab is a delicate process, so we’re ready to answer any of your questions.  

For the best quartz countertops in Los Angeles along with quality granite options, B&F Cabinet, Stone & Floor is the right place to start. We’ll help you get the wow factor that can only come from stone. 

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